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I’ll be out of my home for a year
Published 31/03/14

A MAN whose home was flooded over Christmas says he will not be able to move back in until December this year.

Mark Bond, 46, had to leave the bungalow in Loddon Drive, Wargrave, because it was underwater.

The property, which he inherited when his mother died last summer, had up to 2ft of water as the floods became worse in January and February.

Mr Bond, a music manager, had to stay with friends in London and is now in temporary accommodation in Greys Hill, Henley, paid for by his insurance company.

Now he faces another nine months out of the bungalow as it has to be dried out, then repaired and refurbished.

Mr Bond said: “The drying process takes a long while because it’s a timber property and could be damaged.

“After that is done we will have the house raised and then renovated.

“The drying company were only able to start on Monday as the property was underwater for two months and was inaccessible to anything but 4x4s.

“When the water receded a couple of weeks ago the ground was still too saturated for the company to come and set up their equipment.

“At times it’s been frustrating but I’ve got positive genes. You can’t allow yourself time to get annoyed, it doesn’t help things get done.”

Mr Bond, who returned from a holiday to Italy over Christmas to find his home had been flooded, said thousands of pounds worth of furniture and fittings had been destroyed. “The things we managed to save were those with sentimental value like photos and documents so I was happy about that,” he said.

“We put things up on sofas and tables because we had a couple of feet of floodwater but then the sofas themselves got wet and ruined.

“Pretty much everything has gone — all the furniture had to be thrown out.”

The bungalow has been in Mr Bond’s family since 1978 and was passed down to him when his mother Christa died in July. At the weekend, Mr Bond and his brother Nick began clearing furniture out of the bungalow and lit bonfires to burn the wooden items, which had been ruined by water and mould.

Mr Bond said: “The rest of it, such as the sofas, chairs and carpets, we put in a skip. We did a lot of it last weekend but we have another round to go this weekend.

“There’s lots of damage but it’s more the emotional value that you worry about. The insurance company has been very good and I hope that continues. They’ve put me in alternative accommodation because I won’t be able to move back in for at least nine months.

“It’s important I have a base nearby to be able to tackle all the problems at the bungalow.”

Despite the challenges, Mr Bond still loves his home.

“Wargrave is a beautiful place to live and we are very lucky to live here,” he said.

Published 31/03/14

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